When it comes to the All-Ireland Sailing Championships, much of the narrative in recent years has surrounded the quest for hat-tricks.
This weekend sees the senior event take place at the Royal Cork Yacht Club where Anthony O’Leary may be on course to match his son Nicholas’ three-in-a-row record.
His Olympian son Peter may also win his third All-Ireland title, albeit without the consecutive record.
But last weekend at Schull saw another hat-trick at the ISA Junior All-Ireland championships when RCYC’s Laser Radial sailor Johnny Durcan lifted the trophy after a mixed-conditions series.
Florence Lyden crewed with him on the Fastnet Marine and Outdoor Education Centre Team Racing dinghies used for the series and the pair delivered a solid win beating Geoff Power with crew James McCann.
And in family flourish to the finale, brother Harry Durcan with crew Noah McCarthy won the last race to place third overall in the event.
Sailed in a full range of conditions that started out on the light to moderate end of the scale, the final round on Sunday ended the event on the fresh side of things with capsizes and occasional collisions. Next weekend’s early forecast is unlikely to present such challenges though dinghies will again be to the fore except on a slightly bigger scale to accommodate the adult crews.
The new National 18 fleet comprising three-man crews will be in use for the ISA Senior All-Ireland Championship on Cork Harbour with the third person taking the trapeze position on board as the class representative for expert knowledge.
The full list of nominees that have accepted places at the event has been released by the ISA this week and includes current and past Olympians as well as previous All-Ireland winners. South coast sailors account for almost half the nominations so whatever about a hat-trick of wins in the O’Leary camp, there is a strong chance of a clean sweep at both Junior and Senior level for the third year running.
Confirmed sailors for the ISA All- Ireland Senior Sailing Championships 2016 are:
2015 Champion: Anthony O’Leary RCYC; National 18: Ewen Barry Monkstown Bay Sailing Club/ RCYC; RS400: Alex Barry MBSC/RCYC; SB20: Stefan Hyde RCYC; Mermaid: Sam Shiels Skerries SC; Laser Standard: Darragh O’Sullivan Kinsale YC; IDRA14: Alan Henry Sutton Dinghy Club; Flying 15: David Gorman National YC; RS200: Neil Spain Howth YC; Shannon One- Design: Mark McCormick Lough Ree YC; ICRA Division 1: Colin Byrne Royal Irish YC; ICRA Division 2: Jonny Swan Howth YC; ICRA Divison 3: Paul Gibbons RCYC; 1720: Peter O’Leary RCYC; Laser Radial: Annalise Murphy NYC; J24: Cillian Dickson HYC.
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